About 70% of the earth’s surface is covered by water, yet the oceans are the most underexplored part of the planet. It is on this premise that the Blue Planet project was founded. Led by Sir David Attenborough, a team of professionals set out to unravel the mysteries of the oceans and the impossible creatures hidden in their deep, dark depths. The Blue Planet 2 project is a nature documentary dedicated to a revolutionary exploration of the marine habitat.
The series was created and produced by BBC, and it’s a one-of-a-kind exploration of the natural history of oceans around the world. The first installment of the series was released on September 12, 2001, and was very well received by audiences worldwide, going on to win BAFTA and Emmy Awards for cinematography and music. Now, the craze is all about Blue Planet 2; find answers to all the questions you’ve been asking here…
Blue Planet 2 Background Details
Nearly a decade after the first Blue Planet was released to critical acclaim, BBC announced that it would be making a sequel in 2013 under the title Oceans, which was later changed to Blue Planet 2 in February 2017, a few months before it was released.
The Blue Planet 2 documentary was filmed over a period of four years. It took 125 expeditions spanning 39 countries, which produced 6,000 hours worth of underwater footage and 1000 hours of filming in submersibles. To put it in context, three members of the crew got married, four bought houses, five had babies, and two had babies on the way in the time it took to make the series.
The music for the series was scored by the legendary composer, Hans Zimmer. He collaborated with Radiohead, the British rock band to record a new version of their song Bloom, alongside BBC’s Concert Orchestra. It served as one of the tracks on the documentary’s score.
Once again, David Attenborough is the narrator of this phenomenal reboot. Although Blue Planet 2 followed the steps of its predecessor in showcasing never-before-seen aspects of marine life, its focus is more heavily concentrated on examining man’s devastating influence on the world’s oceans through pollution and climate change.
With the aid of new technology specifically designed and developed by the producers themselves for filming the series, viewers can see all the happenings, above and below the sea at the same time. The Blue Planet 2 series brings to light new information about our aquatic neighbors that have never been caught on cameras, such as the giant trevallies which have a taste for birds and can leap out of the water to catch low flying ones, and the cuttlefish with the ability to hypnotize crabs.
The nature documentary series can be described as a vehicle that transports us into the magic and wonder of the ocean and biodiversity, animal behaviors, and the collective effort that these aquatic creatures go through to feed, survive, protect, and raise their young. It draws the audience into the daily lives of animals in ways that are astonishing, relatable, and entertaining. Viewers are forced to notice the parallels between their struggles and the struggles of the fish in the sea or birds in the sky. We get to see these animals flirt, get angry and irritated, just like humans.
The series doesn’t just introduce us to new creatures, it also brings to light fresh stories of animals we are familiar with: penguins, sea turtles, albatrosses, and others. Who knew an octopus could suffocate a shark so that it had no choice but to leave her alone?
The underlying story on every episode of Blue Planet 2 is the effect that humankind has on this part of our planet, and how we can begin to understand and make sense of it. David Attenborough narrates how climate change has affected the lives of marine creatures in unexpected and alarming ways.
Synopsis of the Series
The series is made up of seven episodes that cover different parts of the seas – coral reefs, coastlines, open waters, and the deep ocean – with each section tying neatly with the next. Each episode is 50 minutes long with a bonus 10 minutes at the end dedicated to showing how the segment you just watched was filmed. There’s no time to prepare yourself for what’s coming, the very first episode throws you right into the action; a particular scene shows two walruses competing for refuge on a melting iceberg that endangers them, another shows baby turtles trapped in a cluster of debris and their vain struggle to free themselves.
The second episode titled The Deep dives into the depths of the sea, where living conditions are the harshest. It shows how some species like Swordfish and Humboldt squid feed on one another to survive. The footage moves from the depths of Antarctica to the Mariana Trench and the Gulf of Mexico, uncovering details about shrimps, anglerfish, and a variety of marine life.
Coral Reefs are the habitat of focus in the third segment of Blue Planet 2. Viewers are introduced to the creators of this environment – the coral polyp – and the way of life of cuttlefish; bottlenose dolphins having fun; worms hunting for their next meal on the reef, marbled groupers breeding, and all the other things that happen in coral reefs around the world.
The fourth installment in the series will usher in the big animals of the seas from spinner dolphins, sperm whales, to great white sharks. It ends on a very heart-wrenching note: the story of a short-finned pilot whale whose infant is dead as a result of plastic waste that they are forced to eat, but keeps carrying the dead infant around for days unable to accept its passing. Could the cause of death have been as a result of fetal abnormality or the mother’s contaminated breast milk? The viewer must contend with the mourning and guilt that lingers aurally and visually.
The next segment reveals the green seas, stretching across California all the way to Australia. The algae-rich portion of the seas serves as home and hiding place for kelp, octopus, oysters, sea urchins, turtles, otters, spider crabs, seadragons, cuttlefish, shrimp, sea lions, humpback whales, zebra mantis shrimp, and what have you.
Blue Planet 2 also covered the planet’s coasts, the coterie of sea turtles that swim up to lay their eggs on land, the predator-laden pools nestled in rocks, and colonies of penguins and elephant seals gathered on coastlines across the globe.
The seventh episode chronicled man’s role in the changing history of the oceans. It examines how plastics and other forms of pollution are causing devastating problems for the seas, destabilizing the ecosystem, and endangering the lives of aquatic creatures. It leaves room for a possibility where humans can retrace their footprints and reverse the debilitating effects of their actions on the seas in order to protect it.
Finally, a bonus 90-minute compilation of the series highlights the magic and essence of our planet’s oceans, showing revolutionary footage that reveals the unknown majesty of this part of the earth, encouraging viewers to love and care for the oceans and her creatures; thereby sustaining awe, raising awareness, and affirming the blue planet’s right to be cared for and treated respectfully.
The nature series has already won several awards since the time of its release including a National Television Award, British Academy Television Craft Awards, and British Academy Television Awards. Thanks to Blue Planet, policies are being influenced around the globe with Britain considering banning single-use plastics. Also, colleges have seen an increasing application for courses centered around marine biology. The Blue Planet effect is still gaining force and attracting attention.
Is Blue Planet 2 Available On Netflix?
Netflix is known for having a great selection of video content just waiting to be consumed, a lot of which are documentaries. In the past, they have always secured David Attenborough’s documentaries, which are guaranteed to take in high audience numbers. Also, Netflix has a special interest with the seasoned naturalist, with whom they recently signed a deal for the production of an original nature documentary narrated by him; so it’s natural to wonder if Blue Planet 2 will be available for viewing on the platform.
You can watch the first season of Blue Planet on Netflix if you haven’t already seen it or need to be reminded of how awesome it is, and the level of awesomeness to expect with the second installment. However, Blue Planet II is not currently available on Netflix and you cannot watch it on the platform yet. It’s only expected that BBC will keep the documentary released late 2017 off Netflix for some time so as to drive up viewership on their own mediums.
When Will It Be Available?
Although there is no confirmed date for when Blue Planet 2 is scheduled to arrive on Netflix, the release history of past BBC documentaries has audiences and critics alike predicting when the new series will be available on the platform.
Blue Planet II is expected to come to Netflix in the December of 2018 or early 2019. Yes, you can rein in your excitement as the wait is almost over.